Twitter removed more than 7,000 accounts linked to the QAnon conspiracy theory on Tuesday, CNN reports.
"We've been clear that we will take strong enforcement action on behavior that has the potential to lead to offline harm," Twitter's safety team said. "In line with this approach, this week we are taking further action on so-called 'QAnon' activity across the service."
The social network said that along with the thousands of accounts it has removed in recent weeks, it is taking additional action to limit the reach of up to 150,000 other accounts.
"We will permanently suspend accounts Tweeting about these topics that we know are engaged in violations of our multi-account policy, coordinating abuse around individual victims, or are attempting to evade a previous suspension — something we've seen more of in recent weeks," Twitter said.
QAnon began as an 8chan-based conspiracy theory predicated on the idea that Trump was taking down a global sex trafficking ring involving dozens of prominent politicians and celebrities.
“But its followers now act more like a virtual cult, largely adoring and believing whatever disinformation the conspiracy community spins up,” CNN reported. “Followers also believe there is a ‘deep state’ effort to annihilate President Donald Trump.”
Dozens of QAnon-backing Republicans have run for office this year. The Oregon Republican Party nominated a QAnon conspiracy theorist in its US Senate race.
Conservatives push back:
“Twitter openly allows: Antifa, Louis Farrakhan, Iranian terror groups, pedophiles, anti-Semites, death threats to the President, leftists coordinating riots, statue toppling and looting,” wrote conservative filmmaker Robby Starbuck. “Not allowed: People who tweet #QAnon.”
“I don’t follow Q but this is nuts @Jack,” he wrote.
“Are there some kooky Q people who may pose a real danger? Yep. Are there some kooky #Resist people who pose a real danger? Yep,” he added. “It’s not really about that. How long until they say political views right of center could lead to potential offline harm to ban most Republicans?”